Fearing Bangladeshi Blogger Might Claim Asylum, Sweden Blocked Visit That Could Have Saved His Life

Seculars protest in Dhaka, Bangladesh, over the killing (BDNews24)

A Bangladeshi blogger and secular activist who was hacked to death on Tuesday would still be alive if Sweden had not blocked his planned visit to Stockholm this month to celebrate World Press Freedom Day, according to the Swedish chapter of PEN, an international writers group.

The Swedish Foreign Ministry said Tuesday that its diplomats were “horrified by the murder” of Ananta Bijoy Dash, who wrote about secularism and science for Free Mind, a website that the Bangladeshi-American blogger Avijit Roy ran before being killed in February by machete-wielding assailants in Dhaka, the capital. Islamist extremists took responsibility for Mr. Dash’s death, near his home in the northeastern city of Sylhet.

In a blistering statement released the same day, however, Swedish PEN revealed that Mr. Dash would have been in Stockholm this week as the group’s guest but that the Swedish Embassy in Dhaka denied him a visa.

According to the writers’ group, the embassy, in an email rejecting Mr. Dash’s request, cited concerns that he might try to stay in Sweden, or another of the European Union countries known as the Schengen area. “You belong to a category of applicants where there is always a risk involved when granting a visa that you will not leave Schengen area after the visit,” the embassy wrote. “Furthermore, the purpose of your trip is not urgent enough to grant you visa.”

The Swedish Migration Agency confirmed to BBC News that it had rejected Mr. Dash’s request for a visa.

The writers’ group, which promotes literature and freedom of expression, said that with Mr. Dash’s killing it would demand further explanation from the embassy.

Mr. Dash, the third secularist blogger to have been killed in recent months, had also written a book about Charles Darwin, the activist Taslima Nasreen noted. In February, Mr. Dash posted a playful tribute to Darwin on his Facebook page.

As Global Voices reported, Mr. Dash’s killing was mourned online by free speech activists, and celebrated by Islamist extremists.

Secular activists rallied on the streets on Wednesday to demand that Mr. Dash’s killers be brought to justice.


  • Rosenmops

    Maybe Swedish immigration is being run by Muslims, so only devout Muzz get it. Probably happening in Canada too. The whole system is corrupt.

    • Frau Katze

      It does seem odd for Sweden to have done this.

      • Zaba

        Most likely, they sought fair and balanced advice from ‘both sides’.

      • k1962

        Not really. They probably feared that his presence might rile up their savages. Kind of how universities prevent pro-Israel or pro life, or pro men speakers from speaking.

      • Dana Garcia

        I thought Sweden had the endless welcome mat for the diverse persons of the world.

        • Frau Katze

          That’s what I thought too.

        • Rosenmops

          Apparently the welcome doesn’t extend to Muslim apostates. Sweden was so open minded it’s brains fell out.

      • Alain

        But this has become the norm. The Obama administration blocked a Catholic nun from the Middle East, because she was too honest about Islam. The UK banned Spencer and Geller for the same. Yet the flood gates for more Muslim invaders remain open.

    • Brett_McS

      Or fellow travellers.

    • They had to fire a whole raft of immigration resettlement advisers – they were recruiting for the Islamic state.


      • Frau Katze

        That sounds bad. Very bad. They’re well along the road to self- destruction.

      • Rosenmops

        Guides have also been accused of fraud, bribery, threats and blackmail

        The Swedes made the mistake of putting muzz in a position of trust. Bad mistake.

    • Linda1000

      Tell me again why various churches and Christians in Canada and the U.S. are not helping ME Christian refugees who are being slaughtered. I’m not particularly Christian but even I know who are the good guys and the bad guys. This time it’s Mennonites doing good work. http://www.edmontonjournal.com/touch/story.html?id=11055132

  • Nuke Sweden.

  • Drunk_by_Noon

    Yeah, this is indefensible.

    • It’s Sweden

    • Censored_EG

      It is since Sweden only accepts anti-Christians and Islamists and/or those sympathetic to Islamists and terrorism, i.e. your average muzzie.

  • eMan14

    Disgraceful. You would think that the embassy would know how dangerous it would be for a man like Mr. Dash to remain in Bangladesh.

    • eMan14

      I think I would toss my cookies too.

  • The Swedish fags deserve everything that’s coming their way from the Muslim animals.

    • Rosenmops

      Some of them don’t like what the government is doing.